MMA Experts Slam Boxing Coach Who Bragged About 10-Year-Olds Sparring

Kids sparring.

Henry Ramirez / Twitter Kids sparring.

The combat sports world turned on a boxing coach who posted a photograph that showed two bloodied 10-year-old children who had allegedly been sparring one another.

It reignited an age-old debate regarding health, safety, and implied consent when it comes to kids participating in sports that can cause brain trauma.

“So I posted this vid of sparring last night at our gym and you should see some of the messages I received,” Henry Ramirez, a boxing trainer from Riverside in California, posted on X, the social media site formerly known as Twitter, on February 15.

“Boxing isn’t for every kid,” Ramirez added, “but the ones who do it love it.”

In the photograph Ramirez shared, two children are seen wearing protective headgear and large gloves but are caked in blood.

The child on the left has blood stains all over their white shirt while the the child in black appears to bleed profusely from the nose and mouth.

Here’s the photograph:

The Photograph Attracted Condemnation

The neuroscientist Chris Nowinski, a vocal critic of UFC boss Dana White’s new slap-fighting organization Power Slap, said: “Stop hitting kids in the head.”

He added: “Boxers get CTE. It’s not fair to give kids CTE. Head shots are inappropriate at age 10.”

This prompted Ramirez to respond to Nowinski with a whataboutism.

“Then we should ban any youth sports with contact then right?” He posted.

Nowinski added: “As a former Harvard football player, WWE wrestler, and neuroscientist, we urge no head shots until age 14.

“No tackling in football (flag), no headers in soccer, no head shots in boxing.”

Nowinski continued: “You can tweak the sports so they can play but not damage their developing brain.”

Nowinski then posted a link to provide further information on the dangers of concussions in youth.

The former world champion kickboxer Gary Turner said: “Nice child abuse, lowering their health and life outcomes, earlier onset of neurodegenerative disease states, earlier death.

“Everything that is wrong with boxing,” he finished.

Muay Thai and MMA fighter Sammy-Jo Luxton said: “These little kiddies just 10 years old.

“The gym owner, the coaches, and the parents need their own beating cause this is child abuse.

“Brain damage/CTE is no joke especially for a developing brain,” she said.

The combat sports regulatory lawyer Erik Magraken raised an important point regarding “informed consent.”

He said: “There is nothing wrong with rough and tumble play – many benefits to it.

“But … kids cannot give informed consent to receive traumatic brain injury. Particularly in the guise of ‘training’.”

Concussion expert Jess Schwartz, meanwhile, called for the Riverside Police force to make arrests. “Arrest the adults,” she said.

“Children do not have the ability to give consent to this ever.”

The Boxing Coach Doubled Down

After Ramirez’s initial post caught the attention of others on X, he later seemed to double down on the message.

“If the video I posted about kids sparring in my gym bothers you, so be it,” he said the same day Thursday.

“I encourage you to open up your own gym and do as you please.”

“According to some Twitter boxing experts, I should never have kids sparring, just hitting the bag before taking them to compete, ok,” Ramirez said in a separate post with a laughing emoji.

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